James Dean’s legacy is truly that of an icon. He was the quintessential Hollywood rebel who lived fast and died young, starring in only three feature films (East of Eden, Rebel Without a Cause, and Giant) before a car accident took his life in September of 1995.
Nevertheless, he is still remembered and respected even today, well over half a century later, largely due to the fact that in addition to playing some great characters on-screen, Dean was also a once in a lifetime character himself that helped to define an entire era in American entertainment. His death arguably even cemented that mythology.
Many facts about the late movie star, such as his love of race cars and his influence on the teenage culture of the time, are fairly common knowledge amongst followers of film. However, there are some other details of his brief and fascinating life that are only known to those who search for them.
All are details that only add to his impeccable mystique, all while making him feel that much more human.